Posted On June 14, 2016

young woman in meeting

I am a Microsoft Office trainer and facilitate a variety of courses in Office 2016. There are a number of new features that are easy, save you time, and assist you in presenting information more effectively and professionally.  Listed below are just a few of these new features and benefits to help you improve your productivity.

What are some new features in Office 2016?

New Office Experience Themes

New Themes let you choose the Office experience that works for you. The two Gray themes provide high contrast that’s easier on the eyes, and the Colourful theme gives you a smart look that’s consistent across your devices.

  • On the File tab select Account
  • From the Office Theme list, select the relevant Theme

Tell Me

Don’t know where a feature is in your new App, let Tell Me guide you.

Microsoft Word, Excel and PowerPoint now have a built-in search dialog box called Tell Me.  Type what you want to do in the app and the results include Help articles and quick commands to guide you through the process.

  • Click in the Home Ribbon and type the search text
  • Click or tap in the Tell Me box to view the commands in the Tell Me list

Smart Lookup

Try to find a definition of a word or phrase without leaving your App to search the Web!  Smart Lookup searches the Web for more than just a Thesaurus definition, it shows images, definitions and information whilst you are editing a file.

  • Open the file
  • Right click or press and hold the word or phrase then select Smart Lookup from the Review tab
  • The Smart Lookup pane is displayed with relevant information from the web that can be inserted into the file


In Office 2016 it’s possible to share and co-author documents, spreadsheets, presentations and notes.  This means you have one original file and not multiple copies that are emailed to colleagues.  Send a link to the original file rather than a copy in your email which reduces unnecessary file versions and email clutter.

Sharing a File

  • Open the file to be shared
  • Select Share on the top right corner of the window
  • Select Save to Cloud, SharePoint or OneDrive in the Share pane and select the location
  • In the Share pane, enter the names of the people with who you wish to share
  • Select the permission level to either Edit or View and select Share

The recipients will receive an email with the link to the original file location to open and edit or view.


In Office 2016 it’s possible to have multiple users collaborate on a single file in real time if it’s saved to the Cloud, One Drive for Business or SharePoint.

  • To open the file, tap or click on the email containing the link to the original file
  • Tap or click on Yes if you are prompted to agree to let others see your changes
  • View the coloured flags and user names where the users are editing the file in real time as you view the file


At last there’s an easy forecasting command!

In earlier versions of Excel using the Forecast function (x, known_y’s, known_x’s) entailed a number of components.  Excel 2016 has made the FORECAST function easier to use and it generates a chart automatically.

  • Select the data to be used
  • On the Data tab, tap or click the Forecast Sheet
  • Select Options to use the wizard and adjust common forecast parameters
  • Click or tap on Create to generate a new sheet that contains a table of the historical and predicted values and the representative chart

New Chart Types

In Word, PowerPoint and Excel 2016 there are 6 new chart types – Treemap, Waterfall, Pareto, Histogram, Box and Whisker, and Sunburst.  These charts enable financial, statistical and hierarchical data to be presented clearly and efficiently with ease.

  • Select the data to be charted
  • Tap or click on the Insert tab, then select from the Charts group and click on OK

Online Video

In Word 2016 it’s easier to add and play online videos or play YouTube videos inside Word documents on screen without having to use another app.

  • Tap or click on the Insert Ribbon and select Online Video
  • Select the video from the Web or paste the embed code in the field
  • Tap or click on the Insert button
  • Click on the Play button to start the video in the document

Insert Files

In earlier versions of Outlook, files were attached by browsing and selecting files.  Outlook 2016 enables you easily attach recently edited documents to your emails from a drop down list.

  • Tap or click on New Email in the Home ribbon
  • Select the Attach File command and select either Recent Items, Browse Web Locations or Browse this PC
  • Select the file and finish addressing and completing the email

Note: If you’ve attached a file from a shared location like OneDrive for Business or SharePoint, you can also choose either Attach as copy or Change Permissions for edit or view only permissions.

These are just a few of the new features and benefits in Office 2016.  For more information on the full range of MCI Solutions Office courses, take a peek at our Microsoft course schedule and contact us to organise an Office 2018 course that suits your needs!